Summer Programs

Leadership Team


Featured Highlight

This content is a featured highlight that can be displayed on secondary pages.



Images should be cropped to 280x173 pixels before uploading them to Ektron for use here.


NOTE: The image will be shrunk when displayed here so that the editor doesn't explode.


This is the headline that will be displayed with your featured highlight, and also the content you want your item to link to.


Leigh Lassiter-Counts '01

Director of Career Services
Leadership Team - LassiterCounts

As the Director of Career Services at Hendrix College, Leigh believes passionately in the students she serves and their ability to change the world. She is the campus champion for career planning and discernment including the Be Hendrix Beyond Hendrix career competencies initiative and the creation of "Career Term" - a novel approach to career development for all Hendrix sophomores featured in The Washington Post, Inside Higher Ed, and The Chronicle . Leigh's past higher education experience includes the areas of fundraising & alumni relations, academic advising, and intercollegiate athletics. A side-hustle as a certified fitness instructor keeps her sane, but her greatest joy lies in the role of wife to Richard and mom to Eliza and Finn. Leigh holds a bachelor's degree in Biology and History from Hendrix College, a master's degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, and was named a Fulbright Scholar to Germany in 2016. She currently serves on the NACE National Planning Committee for the annual Career Competency Symposium and is one of 14 Fulbright Scholar Alumni Ambassadors for the Institute of International Education and the US Department of State's Bureau of Cultural Affairs. Her life's work is to inspire compassionate, caring students to live productive and joyful lives that can change the world!

Tim Purkiss

Director of Event Services
Leadership Team - Purkiss

As Director of Event Services at Hendrix College, Tim oversees the College's summer programs, and he strives to foster the exploration of individual passions and interests through programming for youth and adults. Summer experiences at Hendrix are designed to promote self-discovery; academic, career, and social enrichment; exposure to new ideas and perspectives; advancement of skills or knowledge; and lifelong learning. Tim has partnered with Hendrix faculty as well as local teachers, professionals, and businesses to develop enrichment programs in diverse areas such as French language and culture, MCAT preparation, creative writing, and space exploration. Hendrix has a rich tradition of providing summer enrichment for youth by hosting the Arkansas Governor's School (AGS) from 1980 - 2018. Tim has a long history with AGS including experience as a student in 2003 (English Language Arts), a staff member from 2005 - 2008 (Social Activities Director), and the Administrative Manager from 2015 - 2018. His past experience with the program from student to a full-time administrator for AGS provides unique perspectives and insights into the operation and mission of academic summer programs. More importantly, his experience with AGS and other summer programs illustrates his deep commitment to offering opportunities for academic, professional, and personal growth through unique and creative experiences. Tim grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas before moving to Conway to attend college. He holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of Central Arkansas and is a graduate of the Schedler Honors College. He serves on the Board of Directors to Milestones, a local nonprofit that provides early intervention and childcare services to children who are developmentally delayed. He is married to Morgan, a pediatric physical therapist, and has two children, Sophie and Emory.

J.J. Whitney '96

Programs Coordinator of Career Services
Leadership Team - Whitney

Throughout her roles at Hendrix College, J.J. has walked alongside young adults as they seek to discern their vocations in pursuit of service to others and personal fulfillment in a chosen career pathway. J.J. received her Bachelor of Arts from Hendrix College with a major in Spanish and studied abroad during her senior year. As a life-long United Methodist, J.J. pursued a Master of Divinity from Boston University School of Theology in 2000 where she interned for the Dean of Marsh Chapel and provided religious life programming for undergraduate students at BU. Following graduation, she served Hunter United Methodist Church, a cross-racial church appointment, and became ordained as an elder in full connection in Arkansas. She was hired by Hendrix College in 2002 to be the Program Coordinator for the Hendrix-Lilly Vocations Initiative (later named the Miller Center for Vocation, Ethics, and Calling), a $2 million grant awarded by the Lilly Endowment. Working closely with the Chaplain's Office and becoming Chaplain in 2015, J.J. has mentored 60 young adults who have enrolled in seminary, coordinated co-curricular scholarships for the United Methodist Leadership Scholars and the Miller Center Service Scholars, and led over 25 service-learning trips to countries in the United States and abroad. During her time at Hendrix, J.J. received certification in Myers-Briggs Type Inventory, instructed the "Explorations" course for first-year students, and served on the Explorations Working Team. As Executive Director, J.J. received funding from the Methodist Foundation for Arkansas and the Lilly Endowment for the "Hendrix Youth Institute," a residential program for high school United Methodists who are seeking careers in the church. J.J. currently advises Hendrix students and alumni who are applying to graduate school through her role as the Programs Coordinator for Career Services at Hendrix College. J.J. is married to Kaleb Barrett. They have two children, one who is a Life Launch Alum!

Custom Tag:  
Custom CSS (advanced):

Here are some common options:
  • header-left 
    • header-top
    • header-bottom
  • header-right 
    • header-top
    • header-bottom
  • header-darker
  • header-solid
  • header-inverse 
    • header-brighter
    • header-solid 
You may return to this page to edit this item at any time.